Listen Up! Jury Box Getting Tuned Up by Recession

"As the recession continues across the country, an increasing number of court officials are hearing people say financial hardship will not allow them to take a seat in the jury box..."

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juryduty

It's cold in the world of jury duty.

The recession has been cited as one of the key reasons people are eschewing their judicial repsonsibilities. NPR's Gloria Hillard has the scoop:

As the recession continues across the country, an increasing number of court officials are hearing people say financial hardship will not allow them to take a seat in the jury box.

No one is keeping national statistics on how hardship excuses are affecting courts. But to get a sense of the problem, the Center for Jury Studies — which provides assistance to state courts on jury trial management — conducted an informal poll of jury administrators earlier this year.

Responses varied — some locales said it wasn't a problem, others, like one county in Nevada, said they were hearing more desperation in the voices and letters of potential jurors. Paula Hannaford-Agor, director of the Center for Jury Studies, says the impact on juries depends on how hard the recession has hit a given community, how long courts require citizens to serve, and the actual jury fee.

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